Important Message about LEARN NC

LEARN NC is evaluating its role in the current online education environment as it relates directly to the mission of UNC-Chapel Hill School of Education (UNC-CH SOE). We plan to look at our ability to facilitate the transmission of the best research coming out of UNC-CH SOE and other campus partners to support classroom teachers across North Carolina. We will begin by evaluating our existing faculty and student involvement with various NC public schools to determine what might be useful to share with you.

Don’t worry! The lesson plans, articles, and textbooks you use and love aren’t going away. They are simply being moved into the new LEARN NC Digital Archive. While we are moving away from a focus on publishing, we know it’s important that educators have access to these kinds of resources. These resources will be preserved on our website for the foreseeable future. That said, we’re directing our resources into our newest efforts, so we won’t be adding to the archive or updating its contents. This means that as the North Carolina Standard Course of Study changes in the future, we won’t be re-aligning resources. Our full-text and tag searches should make it possible for you to find exactly what you need, regardless of standards alignment.

Pocosin Wetland

Figure 5. A pocosin wetland rises above the surrounding terrain. (Photograph by the author. More about the photograph)

Our next two stops on this wetland tour will complete our visits to upland sites. You should consider yourself blessed that you can visit pocosins and pond pine woodlands by virtual means because they both are characterized by thick vegetation, wet and slippery soil, and enough thorny vines and biting insects to make actual visits memorable, but not exactly pleasurable.

Figure 5 shows a view of a tall pocosin in Holly Shelter Gamelands. The word pocosin comes from a native American word meaning “swamp on a hill.” This term is appropriate for the most fully developed of these wetlands because those have developed organic rich soil layer on top of the original sand and actually rise above the surrounding topography. The same plants that grow on these self-elevated wetlands also occur in depressions and on the edges of longleaf pine savannas, and, as a result, they all are called pocosins. The community itself is essentially a seemingly impenetrable thicket. The characteristic plants are shrubs such as ti ti and fetterbush, but these are often bound together with spiny smilax vines. Not a great place to walk through.